A Dazzle of Diamonds (Georgia Coast Romance #3) – Liz Johnson

A Dazzle of Diamonds by Liz Johnson
Series: Georgia Coast Romance #3
Published by Revell on August 4, 2020
Genres: Fiction, Christian, Romance
Buy on Amazon

Penelope Hunter loves her job as the events manager at one of Savannah's premier historic venues--until her ex-fiancé walks into her office with his new bride-to-be. To make matters worse, a scheming social matriarch is intent on seeing Penelope fired, especially if she insists on being seen with Tucker Westbrook.

Since returning from serving two tours in the Middle East, Tucker has built a thriving security company. His work is nearly as stabilizing as his friendship with Penelope, who has been by his side since childhood. But when the lone candidate for county sheriff goads him, Tucker loses his cool and ends up on the ballot--and on the receiving end of a smear campaign claiming the Westbrooks were traitors to the South.

To clear his name, Tucker and Penelope must join forces to find the truth behind a 150-year-old lost treasure. But the more time they spend together, the closer she comes to losing her job--and falling helplessly in love.

Buried treasure. An election in the balance. A family history put into question. A Dazzle of Diamonds by Liz Johnson is a fascinating book from the moment you glance at the back cover. It features two best friends—Penelope Hunter and Tucker Westbrook—who’ve been there to support each other through the best and worst of times…as friends for the past 25 years, and as nothing more.  When a slip of the tongue sends them into the “romantic relationship” territory, sparks fly and chemistry emerges as they work together to find a treasure and clear his family name.

I enjoyed this book quite a lot. It was easy to read with a perfect combination of humor and intrigue that had me turning pages long after I planned to put the book away. Plus, I love how the book provided hints as to their past without giving us complete stories or memories. Liz Johnson clearly put a lot of work into developing the characters, and for that, I am grateful. Characters can’t just be figments of my imagination; I want to know how they tick. I want to know their backgrounds, including their proverbial dirty laundry. Johnson does a great job of not only introducing me to the characters but also giving me the glimpses into their personalities and mannerisms that made me want to find out why they were the way they were.

Without going into too much detail (don’t want to give anything away!), I both liked and disliked how much of a role history played in the novel. I liked the story, but sometimes, I thought the past had a little too much influence on how everyone thought in the present. I’ve never been to Savannah, Georgia, so maybe I don’t know much about how people feel there, but I thought the focus on “Southern pride” was a little…too much.

Something else I didn’t like quite so much: A Dazzle of Diamonds seemed to focus a lot on the characters’ flaws and the ones they perceived themselves to have. It got to be a little overwhelming, and I honestly tired of hearing of how the characters weren’t good enough, weren’t pretty enough, et cetera. I felt like these were rather generic imperfections. While they’re definitely weaknesses that a lot of us have, I felt the author could’ve been a bit more original…and she could’ve gone without mentioning them in every other chapter.

I liked this book. Liz Johnson is a good storyteller. The romance was genuine, and I finished the novel saying “Awwww!” and a smile on my face. I finished it in a little over a day, even with me working some ridiculously long hours. It’s a fun, simple story that’ll leave you feeling content when you reach its conclusion. It has its issues (as every book does), but overall, A Dazzle of Diamonds is one that’s worth your time.